The need to improve the capacity to innovate in the agricultural sector was the overarching conclusion when representatives from 21 organizations met in Kigali, Rwanda, on 10-11 November 2015.
The national inception workshop of ‘Capacity Development for Agricultural Innovation Systems’ (CDAIS) global partnership also marked the launch of the programme in Rwanda. The 35 participants from public institutions, the private sector, civil society and farmers’ organizations agreed to strengthen capacities for fostering agricultural innovation in line with the national Strategic Plan for Agricultural Transformation. They also noted the need to improve nutrition-related knowledge and practices for food insecure households, as well as institutional development.
This workshop proved to be an excellent opportunity for these key partners in agricultural innovation to engage in a consultative process that will ultimately lead to a national capacity development plan, based on the needs of those who could benefit most from agricultural innovation.
CDAIS will help Rwanda address its capacity development requirements, in parallel with concrete capacity development intervention
s. The inception workshop highlighted a number of possible entry points for potential innovation niches that would meet selected criteria:
- Aligned with national policy priorities or agreed as a priority by the national working group on agriculture
- Involving multiple stakeholders and have clear roles for facilitators
- Demand driven, with the potential to impact on large numbers of farmers or small and medium sized enterprises
- Exhibit opportunities for learning and scalability
- Environmentally sustainable and include youth, women and low income households
- Not to create unfair competition at any level of the value chain
The Rwanda team comprises of the national project coordinator and the country project manager, supported by the National Steering Committee. Its first task is to analyze the proposed innovation niches and identify interventions for capacity development in the framework of CDAIS in Rwanda, to be rolled out from August 2016.